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What's happening to the Texas defense?

The Longhorns defense was supposed to be the strength of their team in 2012, but they've fallen apart even before Geno Smith and Co. come to Austin.

Mark D. Smith-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

The Texas defense, with future NFL players on all three levels and in their second year under hotshot young coordinator Manny Diaz, was supposed to be one of the team's strengths.

Instead, they've given up 31 points to Ole Miss and 36 to Oklahoma State while putting on an embarrassing display of shoddy tackling.

Over at Barking Carnival, Scipio Tex tries to figure out what's going and parcel out the responsibility:

Basically, we're breaking down at a fundamental level. And we have players behaving like automatons executing single assignments within a specific call against a specific offense instead of applying broad principles of football and good teaching that will help them recognize and win against 99% of the game situations they'll encounter. We're Carl Reesing our LBs with mindless run blitzes on one gap trying to outguess the opposing coordinator, our DTs aren't transcendent enough to cover two or three gaps at once, our DEs were were neutralized with simple containment threats, and the secondary continues to tackle like gridiron Washington Generals.

Jordan Hicks, the team's most experienced LB, will help when he comes off injury, but as Scipio points out, no player can single-handedly fix a defense that's giving up 6.2 yards per play.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.